Election 2023: Newshub Nation Powerbrokers' debate live

The powerbrokers and potential kingmakers held a feisty and entertaining minor party debate on Thursday. 

The Newshub Nation Powerbrokers' Debate featured ACT Leader David Seymour, NZ First Leader Winston Peters, Te Pāti Māori co-leader Debbie Ngarewa-Packer and Green Party co-leader Marama Davidson make their case to the country.   

They outlined their parties' key policy points, charm voters and undercut each other whenever possible. There were plenty of well directed barbs as they all clashed over key policies.   

You can watch the debate live on Three and Three Now or follow our updates below. 

How the minor parties stand in the latest Newshub-Reid Research poll: 

Act 10.1 percent 

Green Party 12.3 percent 

NZ First 4.6 percent 

Te Pāti Māori 3.1 percent 

How Parliament will look according to the latest Newshub-Reid Research poll

Election 2023: Newshub Nation Powerbrokers' debate live
Photo credit: Newshub

These live updates have now finished.

8:32pm - Wilson's standout moment was when Peters asked the "adults in the room" to "keep their trousers on" for the sheer oddity of that. 

O'Sullivan said Peters got a punch in with the "cis white man" comment. 

Lynch said there is no possibility Seymour and Peters can work together as they can't agree on anything.

"One of Winston's best jabs at him was he's not baiting he's imitating. It is quite incredible to watch the real-life transformation of David Seymour into a kind of low-rent  Winston Peters when he hates the guy," Lynch said.

Wilson said if the pair try to sit together around the Cabinet table it won't last long.

8:30pm - Lynch said Seymour lost the crowd while Davidson had good "sound bites".

Wilson said the majority of the debate was Davidson and Ngarewa-Packer versus Peters.

O'Sullivan said Peters had some brilliant lines and debated at Seymour but Seymour would not debate back.

8:28pm - Newshub's Jenna Lynch said Davidson stood out in the debate. NZ Herald's Simon Wilson agreed.

NZME's Fran O'Sullivan said she wanted Davidson and Ngarewa-Packer to break the "bromance" and debate on points as well. She did praise them for putting their hands up for a wealth tax, which Labour shyed away from.

8:22pm - When asked if he can work with ACT, Peters said NZ First will work with anyone to try and "fix it" and Seymour said when elected you "make it work" but hit out at Peters calling him an arsonist turning up to fix a fire.

"The question is can anyone [work with Peters]," Seymour said. "Nobody has been able to."

8:20pm - Talking about coalitions, Ngarewa-Packer said one of Te Pāti Māori's bottom lines is the wealth tax.

Seymour said ACT would work strongly together with National. He kept open giving National confidence but not supply. He did not answer questions over whether he would work with Peters or what ACT's bottom lines were.

Peters reiterated he has ruled out working with labour calling them a "racist and seperative path". 

Davidson questioned whether Luxon can handle Seymour and Peters. She said she is friends with Ngarewa-Packer and also wants a wealth tax.

8:10pm - Peters said white-collar criminals should be let out of prison and instead should be out with ankle bracelets six days a week "slaving it off for the next three or four years to pay back their debt to society".

Seymour said it doesn't matter what crime is committed, there needs to be consequences for crime.

8:05pm - Moving on to crime, Davidson said it isn't just gangs committing crimes. She had a message to victims of crime: "You did not deserve that".

Davidson when people have something to lose, something they belong to, crime decreases. She wants community support to prevent violence and crime.

Peters said he wants gangs outlawed and wants them locked up separate from the rest of the prison population.

"There are 2000 spare beds in the prisons," he said.

ACT wants to slash government spending but at the same time wants to add more prison beds. He said if we hugely reduce the prison population, like Labour did, there will be more crime.

"In terms of what it costs New Zealanders to be safe from the worst criminals, I don't think its that expensive," he said.

Ngarewa-Packer said Te Pāti Māori believes being tough on crime and soft on poverty is not the way forward. She said we "can't prison our way out of justice" and invest in prevention.

7:55pm - It is heating up in the debate. Peters slammed ACTS plan to cut jobs in the public service and Green and Te Pāti Māori's support for wealth cuts.

Davidson hit back saying "we would expect a lot more maturity then you are showing."

"I am not a cis white man," Peters hit back.

7:50pm - Moving to the cost of living, Peters hit out at the super profits banks and supermarkets are making. He said we need to deal with both those things.

Davidson said the Greens have shown we can unlock the wealth in this country. She said it is unacceptable 301 families own more than $85 billion when people are struggling to go to the supermarket. When asked about whether the Government should reign in spending, she said they need to prioritise people's wellbeing and the environment.

Ngarewa-Packer said her party wants to chase tax evasion in NZ and flip the tax system upside down and take GST off all kai.

Seymour wants to give Kiwis a tax cut and slash Government spending by cutting jobs and pay in the public service. He said we have a bare cupboard and the Government is spending too much.

He said we need to create the conditions to invest in business, infrastructure and make it easier to build houses. 

7:40pm -  Starting the night with the state of our nation, Seymour said to fix the economy we need to save money, proposing cuts to government departments such as abolishing demographic departments.

Davidson said Seymour wants to strip away agencies that highlight injustice, while Ngarewa-Packer said the cuts are "clearly about race".

Peters said to get equality we don't need separate "divisive" institutions.

Ngarewa-Packer said wanting a seperate Māori health system and justice system is about trying to lift the playing field. She said the only way to address inequities is by addressing the fact "we were raised in a system not designed for us".

She accused Seymour of baiting with an "anti-Māori rhetoric", to which he denied.

7:30pm - Here we go! The leaders of the minor parties are ready to debate New Zealand's most pressing topics on Newshub Nation.

7:00pm - The minor parties could play a major role in deciding who forms the next Government.  No polls have Labour or National in positions to govern alone, so some form of agreement with one or more of the minor parties will be essential on their path to power. That is why tonight's debate is an important opportunity for the leaders to lay out theor key policies.    

6:45pm - Labour has more staffing issues after Shanan Halbert, the MP for Northcote has been labelled a bully by former staff members. 

Former staff members told Newshub that Halbert was "manipulative", "scheming", "a narcissist" and that they live in fear of him.   

Read Jenna Lynch's full story here.